21/09/2010 Leave a comment
This post is linked with my previous post how companies use social networking where are discussed what social networks were and how they should be adopted by enterprises.
The corporate community seems to allow the risks and negatives to sway their opinions about social networking platforms and the following adoption issues seem to be the major cause. The need for polices and guidelines that need to be developed in order for employee to prefer to keep their network social rather than mix it with work. Corporate sensitive information that may become visible if an external network is being used for work purposes. These statements mentioned constantly generate and push companies to avoid the adopting social networking technologies when education and training can be given to allow ca be given on what are appropriate ways to use external social networks in a work context.
It is important as E2 implementers to mitigate these adoption issue the technology adoption lifecycle is clearly relevant with trying to implement social network within an organisation.
The technology adoption lifecycle is a sociological model developed by Joe M. Bohlen, George M. Beal and Everett M. Rogers at Iowa State University
The technology adoption lifecycle model outlines the adoption/acceptance of a new product/innovation according a set demographic and psychological characteristics of the defined adopter groups and is illustrated as a typical normal distribution
In the following figure we can see there is a range of adopters within the range from earliest to latest; innovators, early adopters, early majority, late majority and laggards.
The report summarised the categories as:
- innovators – had larger farms, were more educated, more prosperous and more risk-oriented
- early adopters – younger, more educated, tended to be community leaders
- early majority – more conservative but open to new ideas, active in community and influence to neighbours
- late majority – older, less educated, fairly conservative and less socially active
- laggards – very conservative, had small farms and capital, oldest and least educated (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technology_adoption_lifecycle)
Principles of User Adoption
- making work easy
- create reasons for people to use the technology
- encouraging person self expression user will want to use social
- selecting your early adopters to spread the work and successes
I strongly believe that executives need take a key role in pushing these technologies within an organisation by being the 2.5% innovators and informing the business how these technologies can greatly improve existing processes. In my current employment I find that there is strong culture with using email for key processes such as service alerting, document reviewing and topic discussions which cause miscommunication and delayed responses. Another point that should be mentioned is that it is important to choose your early adopters, these people can greatly affect the long term out comes and future adopters, people that fit within the above demographic will surely help push and motivate others in effectively using social networking platforms within an enterprise environment.